Thursday, March 23, 2006

Good News / Bad News

Why does my life feel like a soap opera these days? In today's episode, more on the ongoing rot situation. And find out the good news from Mr. Chick! And stay tuned to hear of the breaking story of sad, tragic family drama. And now, a word from our sponsors...

It's creeping. The more they uncover, the more rot is found. Ugly, ugly rot infesting my new house. F'ing losers who did such a shoddy job building that addition! My contractor, Old Ivan, is my new phone buddy. We talk more by phone lately than I ever have with my best girlfriend. I think we're dating. He sends us pictures of the damage and repair each day - sort of a visual progress report. Here are the photos from 2 days ago:

Lovely images, no? Can you see my pretty hardwood floor being ripped up in the upper left picture? Makes me want to cry. That hallway is now bare of all flooring and we'll have to live with bare sub-floor and a HOLE in front of the door (which is now boarded up with plywood until the new door arrives in about a week. Pretty!) until we decide what flooring to put in. It's impossible for us to make that decision from a distance, so we're holding off until we're in the house and can actually see samples of various flooring in the space. When Old Ivan comes back to install the door we'll have him install the sub-floor to the correct height to allow for our flooring choice to match up to the other flooring it touches. Right now Mr. Chick and I are leaning towards tile. We'll ultimately have to do the kitchen to match the hallway, but that's ok, the kitchen floor is old and ugly, albeit neutral enough lino that I was willing to hold off on the kitchen floor for awhile. Guess not now. It's only money, right?? In the meantime, that hallway is unnecessary as access to someplace specific in the house. In other words, we can get to the master bedroom from another way, and we can get to the backyard via the side deck, so we're going to close off access to that space until the work is completed. Don't want to risk a kid partially falling into the crawlspace via the gaping hole in front of the door.

The Orkin Man paid my house a visit and provided some of the only good news coming out of there. We don't have termites! Hooray! We have what's called Moisture Ants, and they're annoying, but not damaging. And he found some mouse droppings (how GROSS is that??!) in the crawlspace and in the garage (thanks again, Mr. House Inspector, for totally missing that.). So the Orkin Man will be coming back to the house ON MOVING DAY (as if it won't be chaotic enough) to spray for the ants and nuke the mice. Termites would have run us in the neighborhood of $2500-$3000 for extermination (gulp), but Moisture Ants only run $150.

Hear Ye, Hear Ye! Mr. Chick received a job offer! The firm in Central Oregon called him yesterday and offered him a job as an attorney (business attorney, no less) in their firm. I think it's pathetic how low new attorney wages are, but the upside growth is decent. He asked for a week to decide, because taking this job would mean we'd have to flip the house we just bought and relocate - AGAIN - to Central Oregon. And not to the cool, upscale city that I like so much. No, to the dumpy ugly-stepsister town 15 miles away from the Cool City. That's where the firm is and that's where they would require us to live. It's growing like crazy (avg. 200 houses per month) because it's cheaper to live there than the Cool City, but it's still a dumpy town as far as I'm concerned. Yes, it's close to the Cool City, but we all know that you get caught up in your daily life of school, work, etc. and pretty soon you're not meeting your friends who already live in Cool City for coffee or playdates or anything. You're hanging out at the local Wal-Mart for kicks. Not my scene. I'm more of an urban girl, not a country mouse. But we'll see. I'll go if it's the best choice for us. And I'll even try to be happy about it. I'm just so happy that FINALLY Mr. Chick was offered a job. About damn time! Now if we can just use it as leverage for the other two firms considering him in the Portland area, we'll be in business. One is just moving slower than molassas, and the other has already checked references and we're trying to get the 2nd interview scheduled.

So this great news is coming at a particularly stressful time, what with the move and all, and my anxiety levels are rising.

My aunt died last night. Just 14 months after the death of her identical twin sister. They were the younger sisters of my mother. Both died from lung cancer. And yes, they were both heavy smokers. It's very surreal for my family right now, because there was a big family rift between them and us. Because of our mothers, mostly. The twins were very close and therefore their kids were close. My mom was NOT close with either of them. She moved away for college to a different state so we were raised apart from those cousins. We don't really know them well. There was a lot of bad blood between my mom and her sisters. It all came to a head when my grandparents were both ill and things got UGLY. And it doesn't help that the aunt who just died was married to a royal jackass that none of us liked. He's the last man standing, wouldn't you know. The jackass outlived them all. But the rift was really between my mother and her sisters/husbands, not the cousins. *I* don't have a problem with my cousins, I just don't really know them. I'm sure I could pass one or two of them on the street and not recognize them. So it's a bizarre feeling to know that a member of your family - what should have been close family - has died and yet not really feel anything. I feel badly for my cousins and have spoken with one of them just today, but it might as well have been a conversation with someone at the grocery store. It's like it doesn't affect me. I talked to my mother this morning when I got the news and she's a little upset, but she probably won't be travelling for the funeral. The beef was the strongest between my mother and this sister. They did NOT get along and most conversations ended up with shouting. The jackass was a big reason for that. She's not very interested in going for the funeral and having to see him. But it IS her sister who died, so that's sad for her. Now both of her sisters, one brother-in-law, and both parents of my mother have died. None of her immediate family is left - she's it. Unless you count the jackass, but he's only related by marriage. So we don't count him.

But no matter what the issues, difficulties and problems were between my mother and her sisters, a member of the family died, and that is sad and tragic. I hope my cousins are able to rally around each other and support each other (each aunt had two kids). Because right now it's hard for us to do that for them. And THAT'S sad and tragic in itself.

Holy Shit!
That just sucks!
so much going around.. ick.
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